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Arrow close to deal with Shell on higher bid: report

Thu Mar 18, 2010 5:55pm EDT

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and PetroChina (0857.HK) are close to an agreed deal with Australia’s Arrow Energy Ltd (AOE.AX) to lift their A$3.3 billion ($3.05 billion) takeover offer, an Australian newspaper said.

The Australian Financial Review said in an unsourced report on Friday that the companies could announced a deal as soon as Friday, which could be higher than their March 8 offer for A$4.45 in cash per share Arrow share plus a share in a new entity holding its international business.

An Arrow spokesman did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Arrow on Tuesday said it was in active talks with Shell and PetroChina, leading analysts to expect a sweetened deal.

(Reporting by Victoria Thieberger; editing by Balazs Koranyi)

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